No filmmaker sets out to make a bad movie. When a movie is bad, then, it is usually not from a lack of trying. Instead, it is more the product of a disconnect between how a filmmaker thinks an audience will respond and what actually works. Below is a list of some common filmmaking techniques that are surefire ways to lose audience interest.
Two older movies treat some of the challenges occasionally seen within Idle No More. Each explicitly addresses the problem of allies newly disaffected by their privileged lives.
I always look forward to Boyle’s movies. His choices concerning subject, music and style are exciting and unique. Also, the man knows how to construct a story: he spent years honing his craft in T.V. (“Inspector Morse”) before he was given the chance to direct a movie. Below is a nice interview with Boyle, courtesy of the DP/30 team. I found the description of his process interesting, especially how he caps his budgets at around $20 million.
Films with a legitimate claim to the title “documentary” should have a sense of objectivity and be rooted in actual events. The word documentary, after all, refers to evidence observable outside anyone’s creative process. With any documentary, part of the creator’s contract with the audience is clear before even the audience takes its seat: in what they are about to see, viewers can expect information to have been given a higher value than entertainment or motivation. It does not follow from this that documentaries will be inherently boring.
What role did the 1862 smallpox epidemics play in the transition from indigenous sovereignty to colonial rule at “Comox,” often translated as “Place of Plenty.” Canadian academics commonly teach that European diseases swept North America ahead of settlement, leaving an empty wilderness to be occupied innocently by settlers. This is not what happened at Comox or throughout British Columbia.
Steven Soderbergh makes an interesting observation about great movies on his commentary track for “The Third Man.” The commentary discusses Carol Reed, the film’s director. Reed had directed 16 films and enjoyed critical and commercial success before he made “The Third Man.” Yet, for a filmmaker with so much experience, Reed worked very slowly on set.
Akira Kurosawa struggled to secure financing for many of his movies. As a result, he was forced to endure long, frustrating periods of waiting. However, rather than waste the time, Kurosawa put his energy into creating storyboards. Storyboards tend to be hand-drawn scribbles, because most filmmakers are limited by their crude drawing ability. But Kurosawa had a secret-weapon: he began his career as a painter. This training allowed him to create beautiful and unique storyboard paintings.
On March 12, 1862, two smallpox carriers, each suffering only a mild case consistent with having acquired the disease deliberately through inoculation, arrived at Victoria on the half-empty Brother Jonathan from San Francisco. One went to New Westminster the next morning to begin the epidemic in each of the major newly urbanizing centers in the young colonies…at the same time and in the same way.
Stanley Kubrick was honoured with the D.W. Griffith Award for lifetime achievement in 1997. Because Stanley was in the middle of production on “Eyes Wide Shut”, he recorded his acceptance speech and sent it to the DGA. In the video below, Stanley’s wife, Christiane, remembers how Stanley prepared for the speech and how he felt after he saw it on T.V.